The user rules

1. maj 2000 Usability and accessibilty on the web becomes synonymous with free choice and professionalizing of the user. Thus, she is more and less self responsible for being able to recieve the information of the websites.

1. maj 2000// design /web //
The computer is putting still greater demands to the user, but despite of that it is easier to use today than ever. There is a constant flow of new applications and new version with numerous possibilities, and youll easily feel like a freak, for instance if you use Word as a mere texttool. Usability is a must, but behind the nice interface the computer and the application is totally incomprehensible.
This is a wellknown problem from other computerised devices. The car for instance. I resently stood at a parkinglot and needed a spanner to repair my bike. None of the drivers I asked had any toolset with them, but they had a service account at the local garage. Tools are for the nerds. We may be able to pull the car apart, but it take specialist to put them together again and even to make them work.
A thousand computer years ago you could choose between a DOS based IBM compatible computer and the userfriendly Macintosh. Real computer men chose DOS, of course, and later on Windows, because they had this superior control right down to the root. Nowadays the user is no nerd, and its now longer sufficient to know how to manage the config.sys file. Lots of various files are spreaded all over the harddrive and keeps the computer running. Plug and play better work, otherwise there will be problems.
You may still just use the computer for mere text editing, though – just as you may use the phone solely for calling friend and family. But that doesnt count for the internet. Technologies and standards evolved explosively and offers new ways to communicate and to get information as well as entertainment. This, on the other hand, demands that the user keeps updating the browser and plug-ins, because the old applications dont support the new standards. Today, we see lots of websites, that wont show up in older browsers or without various plug-ins such as Shockwave-Flash-Player and PDF-Reader. This is no problem though for the new users, because these are installed as default. But within a year they have to deal with updates, new plug-ins and other demands from the websites.
The next waves show up every time a new browser(version) hits the market. And the newest today is Microsoft Internet Explorer 5 – for Macintosh that is, because the Windows version has been her for a while, but at least one facility is not available for Windows.
It may seem inferior, but it is the possibility to zoom the text that strikes me. When using Cascading Style Sheets the designer have had the power (within some limitations, though) to decide how the text should appear on the web page. Except for turning off page specified stylesheets in the preferences the user could do nothing to change that. PresumablY the design was considered to be the best combination of the elements of the page, of how the combination of text and graphic added value to the communication – all should be based on the knowledge to when a text is readable and intentionally give the website A recognizable visual identity.
Adobes website (in 2000) is designed with cascading style sheets to control the appearance, but the pages are being co designed depending of which fontsize the user choses to be legible. It ends up with a bad relationship between the elements, e.g. the heading the orphanage and the text Ex-ILM wizards .... The user must deal with this, but the designer has to wake up, too.
Until now, if a webpage was bad designed – and this is not about if it IS beautiful or not, but if I could read the text – I might have left the page in anger. Now, if I really want to know what happens, I can enlarge the text up to 300%. And thats terrific, now I can read the stuff. But also, I actually co-design the webpage – I have to consider the textsize and the overall look of the page. This isnt just fun, because the settings holds for the next page I visit.
Secondly, the browser view may be set to various screen resolutions from 72 to 96 dpi. If the Mac browser is set to 96 dpi, fontsizes in points will look the same on Macintosh and Windows. Earlier the designer have had to set fontsizes in pixels to obtain this, because the Mac screen was 72 dpi. But now 96 dpi resolution causes enlarged fonts when using pixelssizes, and it influences the relation between the elements of the page.
This is all part of the w3cs recommendation to the browsers, so this this is the new world. And its great, because now I have the ability to actually read the page, but I have also become a codesigner and – as such – have take decisions about fontsize and the overall look of the webpage. It is also difficult because the settings holds for the next pages. These might have been welldesigned with proper fontsettings but now they fall apart. If Im not aware of my responsability, these pages leave? will seem bad at first sight (and that is very important for the visitors impression).
As a user I have to take decisions that the designer took previously. I have become a professional user and its partly my responsability to benifit by the net.
But the greatest shock is probably to be for the designer who just thought he could control the elements and had them in a tight structure. And then find that it is exactly not like that. On the contrary, he have to decide where and how the design should be elastic, so it can stand to whatever setting the user decide.
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Catch me

Catch me

7. JUN 2014 // cd-cover
‘Grib mig’ is the title in danish, for the time being, of a coming cd, for which Marianne Mortensen and Michael Vesterskov had gathered four musicians for two days live recordings. I had the pleasure of being among the audience – and to design the provisional cover that together with a sign up form should make the audience pre-order […]
Egg pattern

Egg pattern

14. APR 2014 // design
Pattern with eggs for the tablecloth and the napkins for the easter celebration lunch. Enjoy.
iSticks and iSkins

iSticks and iSkins

13. DEC 2010 // ipad /mobilt web /offentligt rum
The danish boulevard newspaper, Ekstra Bladet, has decided to campaign for the freedom of speech – seen as the freedom of nudity. The danish MEP, Morten Messerschmidt is supporting by taking the discussion into the European Parliament.
Seven clicks towards Mobile First

Seven clicks towards Mobile First

The net is flooded with apps - for smartphones and tablets. But web sites are still better viewed on a computer, right? So the marketing department is happy and web design is business as usual. Maybe because apps and web sites are considered as two different things, rather than two versions of the same.
You may create coherence […]
Welt aus Schrift, type exhibition in Berlin

Welt aus Schrift, type exhibition in Berlin

12. NOV 2010 // design /typografi /berlin
Posters, books, jugend, bauhaus and de stijl ... via swiss to decon. The Welt Aus Schrift exhibition in Berlin is beauty in the literal sense of the letter. Do take a visit!
Bridges and letters in Amsterdam

Bridges and letters in Amsterdam

Round the city of Amsterdam, crossing the grachten - many of the bridges have their names displayed with ‘De Amsterdamse Brugletters’.

The photography is dead – long live the photographer

10. JUN 1998 // design /illustration
First the good news: The photography has lost its trustworthyness, because the digital technology has made it obvious to anybody that every photopgraphy can be manipulated.
And then the bad news: We are being told that actually the possibility of computer manipulation it self killed the reliability. And thus tend to maintain […]
Spis Bare [Just Eat] receives Bording Prisen 2009

Spis Bare [Just Eat] receives Bording Prisen 2009

15. JUN 2009 // design /tidsskrift /spis bare
The danish magazine Spis Bare is a very inspirering food-professional og well-informed magazine med professional depth and delicious presentation.
Friday June 12 the magazine Spis Bare was awarded Anders Bordings Mediepris 2009. I have in collaboration with the editor, Mette Jensen, developed the magazine during the last […]

The user rules

1. MAJ 2000 // design /web
Usability and accessibilty on the web becomes synonymous with free choice and professionalizing of the user. Thus, she is more and less self responsible for being able to recieve the information of the websites.
The computer is putting still greater demands to the user, but despite of that it is easier to use today than ever. […]
This is not a logo

This is not a logo

The logo is not an element, a graphical form, but the character in the way it is exposed in various contexts. Thus, the logo is not a categorism any more, but a organism, a being.
I was pleased at ‘Total Typographic Saturday’ in the end of october, as Tore Rosbo and Clea Simonsen from the design bureau 1508 presented the identity […]
Web design, home pages for starters

Web design, home pages for starters

1. SEP 2001 // design /web
To the puritan any design that make any demands, will be noise. But you may as well take the opposite stand, that the purely textbased information is reserved for the skillede readers.
Torben Wilhelmsen, Thomas Green and Geert Sander Published first time in 1997. The book was one the selected Books of the Year in 1998 in Denmark. […]
ATypI Copenhagen dynamisk logo

ATypI Copenhagen logo

We had the napkin with the notes from the galla dinner at ATypI in Leipzig 2000, Henrik Birkvig and I on the flight back to Copenhagen, and we knew that we, together with Kim Pedersen, were about to organize ATypI in Copenhagen the year after. And already then we sketched the cliches for identity of the conference: Red-white, old-new […]

More web sites for the danish authorities are using webfonts

5. DEC 2013 //
But far the most of them still don’t! Only 22 out of 122 web sites for the danish authorities. And the majority of those are prefering free fonts. On the other hand is the number more than doubled in a year, since November 2012 when the number was 9 out of 115.
The study is a snapshot that I took November 6, 2013 and covers the […]
It looks like a mail from the agriculture association, but it might as well be phishing

It looks like a mail from the agriculture association, but it might as well be phishing

If I buy something on, say, sales.com, the response mail should come from sales.com and all links within the mail should be to sales.com. Anything else looks as a phishing attempt, and it might as well be.

Technical enthusiasm, please

1. SEP 2000 // web
Usability and accessibility on the net becomes more and more equal to unlimited choices and professionalizing of the user, who thus will be the responsible to be able to get the information from the websites.
You may say I am puritan. On the other hand, when I shuffle the web, I may too say that I have the right to be puritan. […]
Your website is (almost) an app

Your website is (almost) an app

14. DEC 2010 // reklame /ipad /web /mobilt web /mobilism /web apps
I must admit, it’s (still) cool to have my icon right there on the iPad screen. As an app, yes, but a website can also do the trick. And website based app may sometimes even be a better solution than a native app.

Typesetting the net - font embedding

23. SEP 2000 // typografi /web
For a very low cost of 5-10 k fontembedding gives the possibility of getting typographic identity for a whole website – allthough with a litte trouble.
The frustration about missing typographic tools for web design might be well aknowledged. How do I make typography in a graphically sense for the web. Cascading stylesheets offers […]

Freedom through constraint

10. OKT 2001 // web
The postman is somewhat special. He brings all sorts of things. Postcards from Jamaica. Bills, too, unfortunately, but it’s not his fault, after all.
home.pages - preface - june 1997 The postman is somewhat special. He brings all sorts of things. Postcards from Jamaica. Bills, too, unfortunately, but it’s not his fault, […]